Find out what it means to me….(lalalalala…you know I always have a song in my head 🙂 ).
I don’t even recall what got me thinking about this lately, but my mind keeps wandering back to thoughts about the tie between what we value (or purport to value) and how we utilize our related resources. Perhaps it came from recently viewing the movie “In Time” (which I highly recommend—I saw it ten days ago and I still find myself thinking about it). In the movie, people stopped aging at 25 and their currency was time. They were paid for their work in time (actual hours that appeared in a digital clock in their arm). They paid for their life’s necessities with time. If they ran out of time—they died. How they used their time and making sure they always had enough time was life or death. There was a great disparity between those who had a lot of time and those who lived day to day. (I have to admit it also got me thinking about our actual currency and the difference in our current society between those who have and those who have not and the pathway for improving ones position or squandering ones resources—but that is a different post for a different day.)
Time is our one great equalizer. Everyone gets the same 24 hours in their day. We can’t bank it. We can’t give it to someone else. We can’t borrow it. It is ours and it is fleeting. Which turned my thoughts to whether or not I appreciate the time I’m given and if how I use that time shows the appropriate respect to both the time I have available and the things I want to accomplish—the person I want to be.
How we choose to spend our time is a great indicator of what and who we value in our lives. Am I giving the proper respect via my use of time and resources to those things and people that matter most to me? I say that my faith and relationship with God is my most high priority, but do I give it the proper respect via the time that I dedicate to prayer, learning, and service? When was the last time that regular consistent fervent prayer was really a part of my daily life? Do I study the word of God regularly? Do I serve in my church callings and my fellowmen with happiness or do I murmur?
I say I want to get out of debt, but do I really show my hard-earned money the proper respect by how I choose to use it? Do I sometimes (or often) spend without thinking about my long-term plan and showing respect to this valuable resource? Am I more interested in immediate gratification or in the big picture?
I’m basically obsessed with losing weight and improving my health. Is this reflected by how I utilize the time available to me? Do I respect this amazing body that God has given me by feeding it healthy nutritious food or do I drown it repeatedly in diet Mountain Dew and other less healthful foods? Do I get adequate sleep? Do visit the dentist as often as I should? Do I exercise appropriately in relation to how much I value a healthy body?
I value my personal relationships. I think I do a bit better in this area than in most, but am I really doing the best that I can? Would I be further ahead to, on occasion, turn the T.V. off and go visit someone I love? Do I know more about what is going on with Castle or the people on Survivor than I do about my brother, or my niece, or my friend?
Do I nurture those talents that I know I have been blessed with, or do I squander this precious gift either by wasting my time or doubting my abilities? Doubt and fear often cause me to be tentative and let time slip away while I’m questioning my abilities.
These are just some things that I have been thinking about lately. If I were to give myself a grade on how well I do with showing the appropriate respect to the things I value and to the time that I am given, I would have to say that I’m well below average. Too much T.V. Not enough planning-which allows me and my time/money/resources to be influenced by and shift with the tide, the wind and anyone with a stronger agenda/plan in place.
But, that is the one great thing about time. Once it is spent, there are no refunds—but if you haven’t used it yet, you can change your plan and utilize it better. Luckily we don’t get additional time based on how well we have used our previous time. We do get to start fresh everyday with a new 24 hours. Money’s a little tougher, but with time and commitment the mistakes can be corrected.
Does my use of time/money/resources reflect what I value? Am I using them in a way that helps me be the best version of myself? If not, am I willing to change it? How can I best show respect for those things I value?
I’ll be thinking about this a lot. If you have any insights I would love to hear them.
“Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.” ~M. Scott Peck